Personal papers of Thomas Greener

part of archive:
Hackworth Family Archive
Greener, Thomas (b 1820? - d c 1903)

All letters are from after Timothy Hackworth’s death apart from one from the 1840’s sent to Thomas Greener by Timothy Hackworth (Sr) containing religious references. Letters document Thomas Greener’s continuing relationship with the Hackworth family and his attempts to gain recognition for Timothy Hackworth. Correspondence from 1886 shows that he was in contact with John Wesley Hackworth who comments on Greener’s contribution to the Hackworth debate in various newspapers. Prudence Nightingale (nee Hackworth) keeps fairly regular correspondence with Greener and, letters appear friendly and she often thanks him for everything he had done for her father. In 1887 she writes to Greener begging for his help and influence to save John Wesley Hackworth from the workhouse. Prudence Hackworth contacts Thomas Greener again in 1895 to express concern about a letter being exhibited in London that she believes may have been removed from the family’s belongings. There is also a letter from Jane Young (nee Hackworth) regarding one of Greener’s publications.

Thomas Greener also seems to have kept in touch with people who worked alongside Timothy Hackworth, for example D.H. Watson who was the chief clerk in Timothy Hackworth’s office at Soho Works. As well as this Greener, like John Wesley Hackworth seems to have been actively corresponding in a number of publications in order to gain recognition for Hackworth. The series contains some published comments as well as draft correspondence to newspapers and letters between other individuals that were writing about early railways at the time, for example G.A. Sekon, Editor of the Railway Magazine. Correspondence also shows he made the effort to ensure that the memoirs of Timothy Hackworth were deposited in the British Museum and various university libraries.

In 1895 Thomas Greener wrote a letter in the ‘Tit Bits’ section of the Brixtonian titled ‘The First Public Passenger Railway The Stockton and Darlington and The First Successful Locomotive Engine ‘The Royal George’. This letter was then reprinted and circulated by him, the series includes thanks from various correspondents including members of the Hackworth family and Pease family. In 1899 Greener wrote an article that appeared in the Journal of the Society of Arts which was also reprinted called ‘Timothy Hackworth, a Neglected Inventor’, correspondence shows that he had 1000 copies of this reprinted, presumably for circulation.


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